This is the transcription of the ACTUAL radio conversation between the British and the Irish off the coast of Kerry, October 1998. Radio conversation released by the Chief of Naval Operations 10-10-98.
IRISH: Please divert your course 15 degrees to the south to avoid a collision.
BRITISH: Recommend you divert your course 15 degrees to the north to avoid a collision.
IRISH: Negative. You will have to divert your course 15 degrees to the south to avoid a collision.
BRITISH: This is the Captain of a British Navy Ship. I say again, divert YOUR course.
IRISH: Negative. I say again, you will have to divert YOUR course.
BRITISH: THIS IS THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER HMS BRITIANNIA! THE SECOND LARGEST SHIP IN THE BRITISH ATLANTIC FLEET. WE ARE ACCOMPANIED BY THREE DESTROYERS, THREE CRUISERS AND NUMEROUS SUPPORT VESSELS. I DEMAND YOU CHANGE YOUR COURSE 15 DEGREES NORTH. I SAY AGAIN, THAT IS 15 DEGREES NORTH OR COUNTER-MEASURES WILL BE UNDERTAKEN TO ENSURE THE SAFETY OF THIS SHIP.
IRISH: We are a lighthouse................Your Call.
P.S. I've seen other versions of this involving the Canadians and the U.S. aircraft carrier U.S.S. Lincoln, which gives credence to the notion that it is not true. Funny but probably made up. Editor